Monday, April 22, 2013

Miscellaneous Walt Disney World Tips & Tricks Part 2-Money-Saving Tips

Continuing on with some more miscellaneous Walt Disney World Tips & Tricks...this time, some money-saving tips:

-Want to save a day on your park tickets?  If you’re going to WDW during the Fall or Holiday seasons, consider attending either Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party or Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.  Tickets for the parties run between $60-$70 depending on the date of the party and whether you are a Passholder or DVC member.  A single-day ticket for the theme parks runs $89 plus tax.  Save one of the days on your park passes by using one of the parties to visit the Magic Kingdom instead.  Cast members usually start letting party-goers enter the park at 4pm (even though the parties technically don’t begin until 7pm), then the parties last until midnight.  So you have 8 hours of time in the park, plus some fantastic extras...during the Halloween party you get to trick-or-treat throughout the park, during the Christmas party you get free cookies and hot at both parties, you’ll see characters out that are not normally seen in the parks-like all seven dwarfs at once and together!  Both parties have special fireworks shows and parades.  The Boo To You Halloween parade can only be seen at the party and is a real treat!  Check out my post about Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party for more information.

-In Epcot and thirsty?  Want some free soda?  Head over to Club Cool (to the right of the fountain as you head toward World Showcase).  Here you can try Coca-Cola products from different countries around the world-as much as you want and all for free!

-Save money on your counter service meal by ordering the entree without the side.  For example, at Pizza Planet in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, when you order a personal pizza, it comes with a side salad.  You can tell them you don’t want the salad and your meal will be cheaper.  Same thing with bags of chips (and sometimes fries) with many of the sandwiches.

-You can ask for a cup of ice water at any counter service or snack location and they will give it to you for free.  Don’t like the taste of the water?  Bring along a container of Mio water flavoring or individual packets of Crystal Light to add to the water.  Much cheaper than getting a bottle of soda and healthier as well.

-If you are an Annual Passholder, you get many discounts as a perk.  One of the great discounts is 15% off the tours they offer.  A great way to save some $$$ if you were wanting to try out one of those behind-the-scenes tours!

-To help you get the most out of your meals (especially if you are on the Disney Dining Plan), try keeping small breakfast snacks in your hotel room like breakfast bars/granola bars so you can eat something light before starting your day in the park.  You could also use a snack credit for breakfast if you’re on the dining plan by getting something like a cinnamon roll (they’re pretty big!).   Then have a late breakfast/early lunch around 10:30-11:00 to fill yourselves up (a buffet meal works good for this since you can go back for more).  Then have your regular dinner in the evening.  This way, you’re only paying for 2 full meals instead of 3 each day and can still feel full throughout the day.  Don't forget-all WDW resorts now have small refrigerators/beverage coolers in the rooms!

-Whenever possible, travel to WDW in the off-season for lower hotel prices.  Avoid crowded periods such as Summer vacation, Spring Break, holiday weekends and the week between Christmas and New Years.  You can also check out my blog post on The Best Times of the Year for a Walt Disney World Visit.  And while staying off-property will most likely be cheaper, there are many perks when you stay on-property that make it a better deal, such as free parking at the theme parks if you have a car and Disney’s free Magical Express bus service to and from the Orlando airport if you flew in.  For a more in-depth look at the advantages to staying on-property, take a look at my blog post on Staying on Disney property vs staying off property.

-Don’t assume booking a family suite will automatically be cheaper than two individual rooms.  Many times you can get two regular rooms for less than the cost of a family suite.  You can request connecting rooms-whenever possible WDW will try to honor those sure your travel agent logs that request when booking your trip.

I hope some of these tips help you save money on your WDW trip!  Need help planning and booking your next trip?  Give me a shout, I can help you plan and book your Disney vacation for the best price and I'll continually monitor your reservation for any new discounts that come out.  

What tips and tricks do you use to save money on your Walt Disney World vacation?  Have you ever tried any of those listed here?

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